Because this is both vegetable and protein (cheese), some use it as a main dish and build the rest of their meal around this. (You could easily put bits of ham, or other meat of your choice in this.)
The flavor of this dish reminds me
a lot of Cream of Cauliflower soup--
but,...you won't need a bowl/spoon.*Blogger Gail from Faithfulness Farm gave a good suggestion on how to make this more of a low-carb recipe. See note at bottom.
You will need a 3-quart baking dish.
- 1 head of cauliflower (about 3 lbs.)
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 1 and 1/2 cup milk (can use low-fat)
- 1/2 lb. cheddar cheese (2 cups grated). You'll first use 1 and 1/2 cups of this cheese in the sauce, and the remaining 1/2 cup on top. (I used the white variety of extra sharp cheddar by Cabot and, even without adding other salt, that made this a bit on the 'salty' side.)
- I suggest you add NO salt, especially IF you use sharp cheddar cheese.
- Trim the cauliflower to med. sized florets, and steam (or boil) for no more than 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat, set aside.
- In a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat, melt butter, stir in flour and stir together until very smooth.
- Add milk and whisk (stir) until smooth. Stirring constantly while scraping the bottom of the pan with a flat-edged spatula, bring to a rolling boil and continue with that for a minimum of 2 minutes to 'cook the flour'. Remove from heat.
- Grate the cheese (doesn't have to be fine).
- Add 3/4 of the grated cheese to the hot butter/flour/milk mixture and stir until cheese is melted/blended together.
- Pour a few tablespoons of sauce into bottom of your baking dish and spread it out, layer cauliflower florets on that, and pour the hot cheese mixture over all.
- Because I used 'white cheddar' in the sauce, I grated just a little bit of yellow cheddar to add color to the set-aside 1/4 portion of the grated white cheese. Spread the grated cheese over the top.
- Bake uncovered at 400-degrees for almost 30 minutes, OR until you see the top getting 'browned'.................. like this...............
* Gail's suggestion: "I LOVE Cabot cheeses. I make a very similar dish - only low carb. I skip the flour, butter and milk and use heavy cream instead (about the same fat as the butter). The cream will thicken itself as it cooks. I agree about no added salt required but a little nutmeg is awesome. Oh, so GOOD!!"